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Jul 29, 2019

Vermilion Energy blames French refinery outage for Q2 production dip

Vermilion Energy CEO sees no need for dividend cut despite lagging stock

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CALGARY -- Vermilion Energy Inc. (VET.TO) says a refinery outage in France led to a second-quarter oil and gas production decline from the prior quarter, offset by gains in its operations in the United States and Australia.

CEO Tony Marino says the Calgary-based company averaged 103,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, down about 400 boe/d from the prior quarter, as output in France slipped by about 1,300 boe/d or 15 per cent to 9,800 boe/d.

He says the Grandpuits refinery southeast of Paris was temporarily shut down due to a pipeline interruption that left it without sufficient feedstock to operate but has now returned to normal operation.

Marino says Vermilion incurred about $2 million in unplanned capital spending to buy equipment to transport some of its oil by truck and barges to other delivery points in France and Germany, but had to swallow an $11-million hit to funds flowing from operations due to lower sales and higher transport costs.

Vermilion is reporting net income of $2 million on oil and gas sales of $428 million for the three months ended June 30, versus a loss of $61 million on sales of $394 million in the year-earlier period.

The company's largest operations are in Canada, which recorded 61,507 boe/d in the second quarter, but it also operates in Australia, the U.S., Netherlands, Germany, France, Ireland, Hungary and Ukraine.

Vermilion's stock closed at $22.51, down $1.78 or 7.33 per cent, on the Toronto Stock Exchange.